That's pretty much what the writers do these days. Honestly I feel Darth Malgus as a bigger threat than Darth Vitiate, even though he's lived for a thousand years and has god like powers.
Problem most writers have these days is that a. they try too hard to get you invested into their characters and b. they ignore the most basic rule when it comes to writing: The KISS rule: KEEP IT SIMPLE STUPID!
Lol. But yeah I totally agree that great minds think alike :P. I figured "ok if placating them with real world explanations is too much for their tiny minds, might as well bust out the in-canon..."
Perfect example comes from KOTOR 2. Look at Kreia. She was a phenomenal character because her power wasn't insisted on - she herself spent the entire game intentionally avoiding the limelight, then BAM. Suddenly you have to kill her.
Granted Obsidian did a poor job in areas with TSL's writing and cutscenes, but she is easily the most compelling Darksider I've seen to come out of the EU in recent memory.
Though I can't ever bring myself to like Malgus because...well, let's face it, he's Malak 2.0 without the cool deathscene and Star Forge MacGuffin.